Which kind of sugar do ants prefer?/Control

AFTER you've done your research and concluded your experiments, it is time to prepare for the science fair. Ask specific questions about preparing for a science fair, including how to set up your display board, how to prepare a presentation, etc. (Please post questions about selecting a project or conducting your experiment by posting in the appropriate "area of science" forum.)

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Which kind of sugar do ants prefer?/Control

Postby smile2020 » Thu Nov 21, 2013 9:14 am

I am doing a science project on which kind of sugar do ants prefer? I'm using white sugar, powdered sugar, brown sugar and artificial sugar, Splenda. I need some help on the variables....would the independent variable be the different types of sugars? Would the dependent variable be the number of ants each sugar attracts? What would be the control?
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Project Question: Which kind of sugar do ants prefer?
Project Due Date: December 10, 2013
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Science Project on Sugar and Ants

Postby smile2020 » Fri Nov 22, 2013 9:08 am

When doing a science project of which sugar do ants prefer......should water be added to the different type of sugars?
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Project Question: Which kind of sugar do ants prefer?
Project Due Date: December 10, 2013
Project Status: I am conducting my research

Re: Which kind of sugar do ants prefer?/Control

Postby dcnick96 » Sun Nov 24, 2013 1:09 pm

Hello. Thanks for using Science Buddies! I have merged your two questions into one topic thread. Please keep to one thread for your topic so we can best help you with your project.

This will be a great project! You are correct on your independent and dependent variables. If you wish to use a control, perhaps just plain water without any type of sweetener.

In reading online about other students that have done this project, it seems all dissolve the sugars in water. Some keep them in a cup while others poured the solution over a piece of bread. Be sure to research the amount of water you add to each solution (you will want to keep this constant across all of the sugars), as this may affect the ants' attraction to the solution.

I hope this helps. Feel free to write back if you have any other questions. Good luck!
Deana
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Re: Which kind of sugar do ants prefer?/Control

Postby smile2020 » Mon Nov 25, 2013 12:56 pm

Thank you for your response dcnick96! I didn't want to add water to the sugar. I was also given the answer that that control could be the white granulated sugar, since it is the most common type of sugar used. Does this mean that I would not use the white granulated sugar as one of my sugars to test with the ants? I'm using brown sugar, artificial sweetener, Splenda and confectioner's powdered sugar. I was also going to use white granulated sugar but with it being my control how do I need to do that? Thank you for your help.
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Posts: 4
Joined: Sun Nov 17, 2013 12:18 pm
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Project Question: Which kind of sugar do ants prefer?
Project Due Date: December 10, 2013
Project Status: I am conducting my research

Re: Which kind of sugar do ants prefer?/Control

Postby dcnick96 » Mon Nov 25, 2013 8:45 pm

Not using water is fine. However you set up your experiment, ensure the setup is the same for all of your sweeteners.

As far as your control goes, using white sugar as your control is fine if your question
/ hypothesis was something along the lines of, "do ants prefer other sweeteners over white sugar?" However, if you wish for your question to be "which sweetener do ants prefer," then you shouldn't use one of the sweeteners as a control. A control is a neutral "reference point" for comparison that allows you to see what changing a variable does by comparing it to not changing anything. If comparing different sweeteners, your neutral state would be a state of no sweetener.

I hope this helps.
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Re: Which kind of sugar do ants prefer?/Control

Postby smile2020 » Tue Nov 26, 2013 9:12 am

Thank you for your reply. I changed it to this.....The purpose of this project is to determine if ants prefer other sugars/sweetener over white granulated sugar. Thank you for all your help.
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Posts: 4
Joined: Sun Nov 17, 2013 12:18 pm
Occupation: Student
Project Question: Which kind of sugar do ants prefer?
Project Due Date: December 10, 2013
Project Status: I am conducting my research

Re: Which kind of sugar do ants prefer?/Control

Postby dcnick96 » Tue Nov 26, 2013 6:31 pm

Great! Be sure to write back if you have trouble along the way or just to let us know how your project is going.

Good luck!
Deana
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